The Defence Development and Research Organisation (DRDO) handed over technology for indigenous Extreme Cold Weather Clothing System (ECWCS) to five Indian companies in New Delhi on Monday.

The extreme ECWS is required by the Indian Army for its sustained operations in glaciers and Himalayan peaks.

The Indian Army, till recently, has been importing extreme cold weather clothing and several Special Clothing and Mountaineering Equipment (SCME) items for the troops deployed in high altitude regions.

The DRDO designed ECWCS is ergonomically designed modular technical clothing. It has improved thermal insulation and physiological comfort based on the insulation that is required in various ambient climatic conditions in Himalayan regions during different levels of physical activity.

The ECWCS embodies physiological concepts related to reduction in respiratory heat and water loss, unhindered range of motions and rapid absorption of sweat while providing waterproof, wind-proof features with adequate breathability and enhanced insulation, as well as strength features required for high altitude operations.

The three-layered ECWCS is designed to suitably provide thermal insulation over a temperature range of +15 to -50 degree Celsius with different combinations of layers and intensity of physical work.

Considering the widely fluctuating weather conditions in the Himalayan peaks, the clothing provides an advantage of fewer combinations to meet the required insulation or IREQ for the prevailing climatic conditions, thereby providing a viable import alternative for the Indian Army.

DRDO chief G Satheesh Reddy said there was a need to develop an indigenous industrial base for SCME items, not only to cater to the existing requirements of the Indian Army but also to tap its potential for export.